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WASHINGTON COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY     (Washington County, Utah)

DIXIE SUN BOWL

(aka ST. GEORGE SUN BOWL or SUNBOWL)

St. George, Utah

LOCATION

150 South 400 East
St. George, UT 84770
http://www.sgcity.org/parks/cityparks/sunbowl.php


HISTORY

Around 1940, the Lions Club formed a committee to pursue the idea of a dedicated rodeo arena. That committee originally consisted of Neal Lundberg, Reid Leigh, Rulon Snow, and Ez McArthur. Later, a finance committee was formed with Dr. L. W. McGregor as chairman and Clark Blake and George Pace as members. A 49-year lease with an option of 50 more was obtained on some city property where the Four Seasons is now.

World War II put the project on hold, but the committees remained active and funds were gradually being accumulated. The project started up in earnest again in 1946.

In January of 1947, construction was begun in a swampy area south of 100 South and east of 400 East. The arena was ready for use the following September after expenditures of about $35,000.

Since then, several additional phases have been completed, including concession stands, corral work, and extensive cement work.

Early in the building phase, the newspaper had announced a contest to name the new facility. Bobbie Laub, son of Mr. & Mrs. Andrew Laub of Santa Clara, won the $15 prize with the name "Dixie Sun Bowl".


PHOTOS

Sunbowl in 1948
WCHS-00876     Sunbowl in 1948
        Inside the Sunbowl
        WCHS-00878     Inside the Sunbowl

Sunbowl and Surrounding Area
WCHS-00877     Sunbowl and Surrounding Area

People and Horses on the Steps of the Sunbowl
SUU-0013     People and Horses on the Steps
        1950 May Pole dance for Dixie High School
        SUU-0015     1950 May Pole dance for Dixie High School

Other SUU photos:
SUU-0009     Photo of an unidentified group of men with horses on the stairs of the Sunbowl in St. George
SUU-0010     Photo of an unidentified young girl on a horse in the arena of the Dixie Sunbowl in St. George
SUU-0011     Photo of eight unidentified individuals and two horses on the steps of the Dixie Sunbowl in St. George
SUU-0012     Photo of eight unidentified individuals and two horses on the steps of the Dixie Sunbowl in St. George
SUU-0014     Photo of eight unidentified individuals and two horses on the steps of the Dixie Sunbowl in St. George
SUU-0016     Photo of three unidentified men standing with a horse in the Sunbowl Arena in St. George
SUU-0017     Photo of and unidentified man on horse in front of the Dixie Sunbowl in St. George


REFERENCES

William Way's blog on Building the Sun Bowl
(Also see the Fall 1984 issue of the St. George Magazine)

City's plan would save Sun Bowl, Council to take first steps in tentative plan
Article by DavidDeMille
The Spectrum,   January 20, 2015,   Pages A1 and A3

Elks Field sale could preserve Sun Bowl, School site has other benefits
Article by DavidDeMille
The Spectrum,   January 22, 2015,   Pages A1 and A3

In Our View: Sun Bowl
Editorial in The Spectrum,   January 25, 2015,   Page A6

"Proposal could salvage Sun Bowl's future"
St. George Magazine,   January 2015,   Page 31

"In Search of Community Spirit"
by Lyman Hafen
St. George Magazine,   April 2015,   Page 46
This article provides a thoughtful discussion of the pros and cons of saving the Sun Bowl.